As pandemic restrictions have begun to ease up around the country within the last year, Keene State College has been making a big push for the return of a complete in-person campus experience. However, there are a small number of faculty that would prefer to still hold their courses remotely to protect themselves from COVID-19 because they are at-risk.

The current accommodations for classrooms include air filters, providing increased classroom space for proper distancing, and N95 masks for professors.

The Equinox knows the college is doing their best to work with the faculty of KSC and they are working on a case-by-case basis when it comes to accommodating the professors and their courses.

When it comes to offering online classes at KSC, we see it as a “why not?” mentality. Although online classes are not ideal for learning or the campus experience, there are such a small number of professors teaching online that the college should allow for them to continue. Zoom courses can’t be completely eliminated all at once. The college should let professors that are at risk teach online until they feel comfortable returning to the classroom. Professors make the college go ‘round.

In order for professors to effectively and efficiently do their jobs, they have to feel safe and comfortable in their teaching environments. The air filters, provided masks and increased classroom space for professors at-risk are a great starting point for their safety because there isn’t going to be a time in the near future where COVID-19 doesn’t affect our community.

Professors can still require face coverings in their classrooms even though they are not required in the majority of other spaces on campus. There isn’t much quality from online classes, so we hope that with the tools available, the college and professors can collaborate to bring in-person classes back for all courses.

There is a point out of the college’s control: if and/or when the professors are going to feel safe teaching in-person classes again. But, at the end of the day, everyone benefits from professors being able to do their job. Bringing the professors at risk back to campus is going to be challenging, but professors feeling safe in class is going to be key to the return to normal.

We can’t afford to lose more professors, and for the sake of the student body we hope that the college continues to go out of their way to ensure the comfort and safety of the faculty and staff of KSC.

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